How much solar energy can your roof make? Just Google it

Project Sunroof shares some of its technology with Google Maps and Google Earth, and then adds its own spin to it.

Story highlights

  • Google project gives instant results for home solar potential
  • Data covers 42 US states and 43 million buildings
  • It was born out of famed '20 percent time' scheme

Marrakech, Morocco (CNN)If you've ever thought about putting solar panels on your roof, you know that the process doesn't exactly qualify as an impulse purchase.

Typically, it involves multiple visits from solar installers.
    The standard practice in the industry is to go up on the rooftop with a fish-eye camera, then take a picture from each of the four corners to make an estimate of the solar potential of the roof.
      What if you could do that from your computer instead, and all by yourself?
      Enter Project Sunroof, a Google tool that uses high-resolution 3D data and artificial intelligence to allow you to do exactly that.